A motorist who was drunk when she left a golf fundraiser ran over and killed a woman walking with her mother on a Plymouth sidewalk outside a church and then lied to police about why her vehicle went out of control, according to charges.
Luann M. Johnson, 56, of Medina, was charged Monday in Hennepin County District Court with criminal vehicular homicide in connection with the June 12 death of 56-year-old Mary C. Singleton, of Plymouth.
Singleton was walking north on a sidewalk less than a block from her home near Wayzata Free Church in the 700 block of County Road 101 about 5:45 p.m., when she was hit from behind, police said.
Messages were left with Johnson and her attorney seeking a response to the allegations. Johnson was charged by warrant and has a court appearance scheduled for Wednesday.
According to the criminal complaint:
Witnesses told police that Singleton and her mother were on their routine walk, when Johnson's northbound car "suddenly swerved across both southbound lanes of Hwy. 101, jumped the curb" and struck Singleton, the charging document read.
Johnson explained to police at the scene that something went wrong with a tire. The State Patrol later determined that nothing was wrong with her tires in the moments leading up to the crash.
Officers detected the odor of alcohol on Johnson, who acknowledged she had been drinking at a fundraiser at an Eden Prairie golf club and was observed "driving aggressively" on I-394/Hwy. 12 before turning north on Hwy. 101, the charges read.
Johnson did poorly on sobriety tests at the scene, and a preliminary breath test measured her blood alcohol content (BAC) at .101 percent, above the legal limit for driving in Minnesota. About two hours after the crash, blood was taken from Johnson and testing revealed a BAC of .08 percent, still an illegal level.